4 Signs You're Settling For Less Than God's Best
Have you ever met someone whose life just doesn’t line up with their gifts and talents? You wonder, what is he or she doing here? She should be on the big screen. He should be touring the globe, be a best-selling author, be a millionaire or just doing and being more.
Have you ever had a conversation with someone who had dreams and desires they’ve only wished they’ve achieved? Then they follow with a bunch of excuses and regrets. “If I would have only took that risk.” Or “If I only applied for that program.” “Maybe I should’ve moved to NYC or LA.” “If I didn’t have kids, had more money or didn’t allow so and so to influence me”, etc.
This is a problem!
A serious serious problem! Why?
Well, the world is waiting on the gifts, dreams and purpose God has placed inside all of us! This includes those in and outside His will. When we fail to manifest the plans God has for our lives, we’ve not only failed ourselves, but we’ve failed God and the people God desires to impact through us.
There are many things that can factor into someone failing to achieve the purpose they were created to fulfill. But the one I would like to address is SETTLING!
Think about it – somewhere down the road, the person with those amazingly unutilized gifts, talents, unmet dreams and purpose, settled for less and stopped striving for greater. They accepted their current situation and got comfortable. In scripture, Abram’s father, Terah, had a goal to take his family to the land of Cannan but when they stopped in Haran, they end up settling there. Terah never accomplished his goal and ended up dying in Haran (Genesis 11:31).
Settling for less is not always a conscious or intentional choice.
Many people don’t recognize when they’ve settled.
It’s easy to recognize others shortcoming but the big question is: Are you settling in life? Are you settling for Haran when you’re meant to reach Cannan?
Here’s 3 signs of settling that just might sound familiar to you:
1. Battling with Conflicted Emotions
When you think about your current position in life, are you happy and at peace? OK STOP! I want you to think about this and be honest with yourself. Are you happy? No seriously, think about it, are you living or moving in the direction God has called you to? Or, can you identify areas of your life you know don’t align with God’s will and as a result you’re experiencing feelings of discontentment, defeat, tiredness, stress or maybe even jealousy and envy when you see others moving in the right direction.
As a Christian, I don’t believe it’s acceptable to carry those sort of emotions. However, there is something I call ‘holy dissatisfaction,’ which I define as an inner-feeling we experience when we are not moving in God’s direction for our lives. It’s the lack of peace you experience as a result of not being in God’s perfect will. When you aren’t moving in God’s direction, He will sometimes turn you around by giving you a sense of unrest, leaving you with something in your heart that desires more. The “more” may be unclear but deep down you know there has to be more to life than “this”. Maybe it’s your current 9-5, you’re no longer fulfilled or maybe you never were. You’re waking up every morning miserable and regretting the work day ahead. Maybe you looking forward to your work day ending before it’s even started. If this is the case – it’s a sign you may be settling. Don’t get comfortable in this place. This is your heart telling you God has more for you. There’s more waiting!
2. Questioning God’s Promises
Are you playing it small? The word of God is full of countless promises for our lives. However, many times we limit God to our personal experience versus the truth of His word. It’s easy to give up and stop trying when things don’t seem to go the way we think they should or when we experience failure. You may see your failures but God sees your future. God is not a liar, don’t give up on Him because His promises are always available to those who seek Him. If you have not seen the reality of what God has promised you personally and/or in His word, that means you still have work to do. Don’t settle for what you currently see and experience.
Timing is a key factor when moving towards your promises. There are many people in the scriptures who knew their promise years prior to the fulfillment. Jesus knew his purpose by the age of 12, but didn’t begin his ministry until 30 years old and fulfilled his purpose 3 years after that. Another biblical example is Joseph, he had a dream at 17 years old but didn’t see his dream fulfilled until 22 years later. There are plenty of others as well. The point is there’s more available and more is coming as long as you don’t settle and give up.
3. Lack of Vision
What is God calling you to? What are your gifts and talents? And how does God want you to use them? Proverbs 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Without vision it’s easy to become complacent and comfortable wherever you find yourself. We are all created to accomplish something God placed in us and it starts with God placing vision in us. If you don’t have any vision in your life, whether for your career, ministry, family, etc. then you need to consider why and ask God for clarity and vision.
4. Self Neglect
I believe in self sacrifice and serving others. It’s a godly and kingdom principle that helps advance the lives of others and God’s plan. There are moments in our lives when God will ask us to sacrifice our desires for His, as well as our time, certain people, money, etc. ultimately leading us to our purpose. However, have you continued to put the desires and dreams of others before your own? It could be your children, relatives, colleagues, whoever. There are times in our lives when it’s necessary to serve others and there are times when we have to work on ourselves, so we are better equipped to serve others. Ultimately, we still have to be obedient to the individual call on our lives while sacrificing and serving. This requires balance. Some people who tend to sacrifice too much are doing it to earn love, validation or approval from other people and God. Rather, we should be responding to God’s current assignment for us. It’s easy to focus on others and keep saying “someday” on your dreams. Be sure to tune in to what God is asking from you in this season. It is not ok to continually sacrifice if that’s not all of what God has called you to. God and the people connected to your assignment are waiting on you!
If you notices one or more of these signs in your life there is a chance you may be settling. Take time to seek God on what you should be focusing on today. Follow His peace and voice. He promises to guide the steps of the righteous.